String quartet sheds another leader

String quartet sheds another leader


norman lebrecht

January 26, 2018

The Leipzig String Quartet made it into the tabloids a couple of years back when its first violin, Stefan Arzberger, was charged with attempted murder after an incident with a fellow-guest in a New York hotel.

The case was never brought to trial and Stefan, who quit the quartet, is now living happily as a US citizen.

His successor, Conrad Muck, today sent us his notice to quit.

Conrad Muck, first violin of the Leipzig String Quartet since 2015, is leaving the ensemble in January 2018 at his own request to pursue new artistic projects. He plans to retain musical ties with the string quartet in the future.




  • Rodney Friend says:

    ==Stefan, who quit the quartet, is now living happily as a US citizen.

    Really ? I’d heard he was joint-concertmaster of a Munich orchestra

    • Patricia Davis says:

      Hello Mr Friend!
      I studied with you at RCM and happened to see your comment just now. I have a recording posted on SoundCloud of the Prokofieff D Major Concerto that I studied with you which I’d love for you to hear. Thank you for teaching me!
      Patricia Davis
      Google: Patricia Davis Violinist

    • George Porter says:

      Sueddeutsche Zeitung had this on 30/11/17: After the nightmare (Google Translate)

      A concert tour that becomes a nightmare. The case of Stefan Arzberger, known as the primarius of the Leipzig string quartet, went through the media. After a concert in spring 2015 in New York, the violinist is arrested there, he has attacked a woman in the hotel where the quartet lived. Arzberger himself can not remember anything. Later, the inclusion of a surveillance video proves that he has been put under K.O. drops and robbed, and has attacked the woman insanely delirious. The trial lasted 16 months, so long was he not allowed to leave New York or work. A situation of paralysis, in which Arzberger was also dependent on financial support for the enormous legal fees.

      One who has been particularly dedicated to him during this time is Monika Henschel. At the time, the violist of the Munich Henschel Quartet organized a charity concert in which musicians of the great Munich orchestra played for Arzberger. Arzberger relocated his main residence to Munich after the indictment was dropped. Even while he was stuck in New York, he left the Leipzig String Quartet and played in 2016 for a while in the Symphony Orchestra of the Bavarian Radio.

      It is clear that such a time does not pass without a trace. At Arzberger this is also reflected in the fact that he is playing a concert in favor of a fundraising campaign for politically persecuted artists of the ‘Hamburg Foundation for the Politically Persecuted’. Together with the Henschel Quartet he will improvise live in the Kunstraum Bogenhausen for the installation ‘The Memory of Water’ by the artist Angelika Bartholl. Afterwards there will be a conversation with the audience.

      Stefan Arzberger and the Henschel Quartet, Friday, December 1, 7.30 pm, Kunstraum Bogenhausen, Ismaninger Straße 106

  • David H Spence says:

    I heard that Stefan was playing as a substitute player with the Bavarian Radio SO under Mariss Jansons, but now the Leipzig String Quartet position is back open. I’ve seen and heard no evidence of his living in the United States; he may have some kind of ties or another with somebody working for the United Nations in New York City or something tied in with that. I’d say it is time to welcome him back on board with the Leipzig Quartet – and from now on as well to watch vigilantly any drink that he is being served. For not being more vigilant of what traffic enters and exits the Hudson Hotel on West 58 Street, Ian Schrager should own Stefan Arzberger a violin of his own choosing, back pay and compensation for mental anguish suffered along the way. Neither he nor also the real perpetrator of what happened at the Hudson Hotel in late March, 2015, Jerry Neptune (a slap on the wrists for a mere theft charge from the NYPD – what a laugh!), should not get away scot-free with what they have so far. It continues to be an outrage if they do.

    Furthermore, I learned just two days ago that Barry, right before he left the White House pardoned Schrager for still existing charges on his record from many years ago of millions of dollars in tax fraud (and potentially also cocaine possession), probably (in likely an ‘art of the deal’ sort of way) by the Donald. How twenty-something could Barry have been and the other several parties involved – what a bag of scum, who all deserve each other, but neither Arzberger nor anybody else involved with the Leipzig String Quartet.
    As an aside, the NYPD in not having immediately served a search warrant on Jerry Neptune could and perhaps should be held a bit liable as well.

    As for New York City, any properties owned by either Ian Schrager or Donald Trump, the Hudson on W. 58th St, included, if you must visit the city, stay away from these, lodge somewhere else!

    • David H Spence says:

      Ditto. …..and for him (Stefan) from now on as well to watch vigilantly over any drink that he is being served or have a well trusted colleague do so.